Cut or don't cut

nancychoMay 8, 2013

All the orchid fell off the main branch but before is fell off another branch grew from the main branch and orchids bloomed. Should I but down the empty branch or leave it alone? See picture.

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arthurm(Sydney, NSW AUST)

This is the eternal question. The answer is "it depends"
The link has numerous past threads on this subject, bear in mind you are getting advice from many growers, from newbies to "experts".

Here is a link that might be useful: Past threads on this subject

    Bookmark   May 8, 2013 at 7:26PM
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I cut. Plant looks better and will grow a new spike this winter.

(thanks Arthur!)

    Bookmark   May 9, 2013 at 12:25AM
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westoh Z6

In this case and at this point, I'd leave it as it branched naturally and is still green and the flowers don't look too oddly arranged. I would cut it back to within 1/2" of the main plant once the current flowers start to decline.

An unusual response by me, as I almost always cut after the main flowers die back. Again, it's already branched/bloomed and the flowers don't look too bad, so why not enjoy them for a month or so.

Good luck,


    Bookmark   May 9, 2013 at 6:50AM
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What I was wondering was if I should cut back the empty branch not the one with flowers but the are on the same branch so I don't want to disturb it. I'll just wait.

    Bookmark   May 9, 2013 at 2:27PM
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westoh Z6

Yes, it's green but it doesn't look like it will generate any more branches or flowers. About 1/2" above the blooming branched spike.

It is really a personal call, do you like the look with it there? If not, cut it...


    Bookmark   May 9, 2013 at 3:33PM
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I never cut orchid. Someone told me I should of cut it down after the first set of blooms fell off. I couldn't do it, and I'm glad I didn't because a week later new blooms started to sprout. My Phal Orchid has now been in full bloom for 10 moths. If it's happy and not dying then why cut it? You might get new blooms out of that spike like I did.

Check out my blog, I have some great pics of my Phal Orchid that wont stop blooming.

I'm Blessed With A Constant Blooming Phalaenopsis

Martina :)

    Bookmark   May 10, 2013 at 2:41PM
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Its all in the 'eye of the beholder.' Old flowering canes are ugly to my eye. To other people they may find them lovely.

Time for Arthurs picture,


    Bookmark   May 10, 2013 at 11:10PM
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arthurm(Sydney, NSW AUST)

It all depends on how desperate you are to see a flower and where you are in the orchid hobby.

It is all there in the past threads.

The other day the lady next door asked me to tidy up her Phal. which had been in bloom for something like 2years. I think it is an equestris hybrid because the flowering parts were much branched with many scars where past flowers had been. There was one flower at the end of many branches and there were indications that it was about to form more side branches. SNIP

Heaven forbid, but some readers might want to show their orchids one day. Here is a benching at an orchid Society meeting. Those hard hearted Orchid Judges in Australia take into account the number of flowers on the raceme and how those flowers are arranged. Probably something similar happens under AOS Judging.

Here is a picture of a miniature flowering Phalaenopsis Hybrid that would only have two or three flowers open at the time. Note the flower scars on the stem to the right. I would let it flower for about three months before cutting the spike off at the base.

This is what happens if you cut to a node and then cut to another node and so on.

Sorry to be a grouch but this forum should be about growing better orchids.

This post was edited by arthurm on Sat, May 11, 13 at 4:48

    Bookmark   May 11, 2013 at 4:24AM
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